Eldon school district bond to aid in expansion of Middle School building, future projects

MITCH PRENTICE
An architectural rendering of what the added Eldon Middle School building space might look like after completion.

The June ballot was one with a number of important candidate face-offs. However, on a more local level, Eldon residents voted towards the approval of a no tax bond that the district will now use for a number of improvements. 

In a letter to the community, the Eldon Mustangs Facebook page stated the following previous to the vote:

The June 2 no-tax increase bond issue will allow us to build six classrooms on the south end of the Middle School.  Our team researched plans for an addition on the northeast corner, but the existing building and an addition at that site could not meet without creating a valley in the roofline and a serious potential for leakages down the road. An addition to the south end of the building was determined to be the most beneficial and cost effective option. Building on the south end allows for a dedicated area for 6th grade students. The classroom size is similar to what is already at the Middle School. The district will not have to build additional restrooms with this addition because we can use the existing restrooms by the gymnasium. This addition will not affect any current parking or traffic at the Middle School. We also believe that the construction process on the south end will have the least impact on instruction at this location.”

District Superintendent Matt Davis says he thought they received a great response from the community. After a successful vote, he saysthe Eldon School District is working with The Architect's Alliance to have the construction documents for the Middle School addition available by July 1. The district will then open bids on July 23 and select a general contractor after that date with the goal of breaking ground by the first week of September.

“Currently, South Elementary is the fourth largest Preschool-3rd grade elementary school out of 435 elementary schools in the state of Missouri.   Lowering the number of students at South Elementary School will help in so many ways,” Davis said.

Another added addition that will be funded by the bond is what the district calls an “animal classroom laboratory”, which will be added onto the existing Ag Center. Davis says this will be used to further the possibilities of the vet science and animal science curriculum. 

The district will includesmall and large animal labs. Davis says the small animal labs will be on grooming pets, nail trimming, proper vaccinations and general animal husbandry. They also plan to do some feed trials with chickens growing them on different feed rations. For the Swine and larger livestock, he says they will hopefully be able to farrow out a sow learn to Artificial Insemination on cattle and pigs as well as how to properly give vaccinations. 

The district also plans to use funds to update playground equipment for the preschool program. Davis says the district hopes to help the early childhood students increase their physical activity levels on this new equipment, which should lead to better focus. This should also lead to more peer interaction. 

“Our early childhood playground committee will be assessing  space constraints, site preparation and overall goal for the additional equipment which should consist of freestanding equipment as well as playground sets to meet the needs of all our early childhood students,” Davis said.

Progress on these new additions should see completion dates near the end of next summer.